RUSSELL Arkley’s Nationwide House will be looking to pull off a great escape on the final day of the West of England Premier League tomorrow, writes Matt Abbott.
His side are currently at the foot of the Wiltshire Division but take on ninth placed Devizes, who will finish last themselves if Nationwide House can pull off an unlikely win, which relies on the side securing a hatful of bowling and batting bonus points, while restricting their opponents.
Last weekend, Nationwide fell to a heavy 10-wicket defeat against Winsley, with the opening four batsmen scoring just 14 runs between them. Mark Sheppard top-scored with 53 but Nationwide will need their openers, such as Nick and Jon Clarke – the side’s top performers with the bat this year – to post good scores at the London Road Ground on Saturday if the side are to have any chance.
Elsewhere in the Wiltshire Division, Purton will cement second place with victory over eighth placed Trowbridge.
Elliot Hill’s side travel to the County Ground in Lower Court Road, Trowbridge, on Saturday, knowing that Marshfield are breathing down their necks in third place.
Purton will need to recover from last weekend’s three wicket defeat to champions Burbage and Easton Royal if they are to secure second ahead of Marshfield, who take on seventh placed Winsley.
In Premier Division Two, Goatacre take on Potterne at looking to make it four wins on the spin.
Last Saturday they beat Cheltenham by 17 runs. Ed Kilbee hit 52 after being caught by Sam Didcote off the bowling of Michael Kelly. That win saw them edge away from Cheltenham, who sit behind in seventh.
A win against Potterne will see Brad Dawson’s side maintain and finish in sixth place.
In the Glos/Wilts Division, Swindon will look to cap off a decent season by finishing in third ahead of fourth place Biddlestone - their opponents on the final day.
Swindon, last year’s Wiltshire Division champions, lost to Rockhampton by six wickets last Saturday and need to avoid defeat at Cuttle Lane against Biddlestone, who beat Chipping Sodbury last week by 67 runs.